Tag:Brady Quinn
Posted on: October 13, 2009 10:43 pm
Edited on: October 13, 2009 10:56 pm

Brady Quinn's House For Sale

If actions speak louder than words, someone needs to tell Brady Quinn to keep it down.

According to Waitingfornextyear.com , Quinn put his $630,000 Avon Lake home on the market - a telling sign of his future with the Cleveland Browns.

The move comes as no surprise.

Quinn's week three halftime benching in Baltimore all but signaled the end of his time with the Cleveland Browns.

I would not be surprised if Eric Mangini and George Kokinis decided to trade Quinn before next weeks' NFL trade deadline.

The Browns currently have three quarterbacks capable of running the offense: starter Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn, and journeyman backup Brett Ratliff. Ratliff was one of the key pieces in the draft day deal with the Jets for the rights to Mark Sanchez.

Mangini has seen Ratliff progress in his system, so Mangini would likely feel comfortable leaving the backup duties to him.

Few teams appear in need of a project quarterback, but one team stands out more than the others: the Washington Redskins.

Jason Campbell is still the team's unquestioned starter, but there is a clear lack of depth behind him.

38-year-old backup Todd Collins would be next in line, but no one knows what to expect from Collins 2-3 years from now. The promising Colt Brennan is currently on injured reserve, and that leaves a big question mark behind Collins as the third quarterback.

With the Redskins wallowing in mediocrity and Jerry Jones' Cowboys making all the headlines, such a high-profile move has Daniel Snyder written all over it.

The move would re-energize the fanbase and send a strong message to Jason Campbell - play well or get benched.

The NFL trading deadline is a week away. There's still a week of football to be played, and much can happen between now and then.

We'll soon find out how the situation resolves itself.

Posted on: September 28, 2009 7:32 pm
Edited on: September 28, 2009 8:14 pm

The Dolphins Should Trade for Brady Quinn

Have you ever known two different people who you thought would be perfect for each other? The two parties involved made so much sense that you wonder why they didn't come together in the first place.

Such is the case with the Cleveland Browns and the Miami Dolphins.

A trade where the Browns send Quinn to the Dolphins would be a win-win scenario for all parties involved.

On one side, the Cleveland Browns are smack in the middle of another quarterback controversy.

Currently, the Browns have two young quarterbacks on the roster - neither of which they can fully support while the other remains with the team. Browns head coach Eric Mangini benched Quinn in Sunday's blowout loss to the Ravens - effectively shattering any trust either can have for the other.

For all intents and purposes, Brady Quinn's time in Cleveland is over.

Furthermore, the Browns still have former Pro Bowl quarterback Derek Anderson on the roster - who proved he could effectively orchestrate Brian Daboll's offense in limited action.

In Miami, the Dolphins received word today that Chad Pennington's 2009 season will likely come to an end .

Pennington's absence leaves Chad Henne to run the offense. Henne did little to impress last weekend against the Chargers - completing 10 of 19 passes for 92 yards. He threw one interception which was returned for a touchdown.

Coming off multiple shoulder surgeries, the 33-year-old Pennington cannot be relied upon to be the long-term answer in Miami.

Enter Brady Quinn.

Quinn's conservative approach to offensive football fits perfectly with what the Dolphins like to do. In their current run-heavy, wildcat-based offense, the Miami Dolphins do not need a quarterback to throw for 300 yards on Sunday. They need a quarterback to manage the offense, avoid turnovers, hand the ball off to Ronnie or Ricky, and convert short distances on 3rd down.

Quinn would be perfect for that.

The Dolphins are loaded with talent at every position.

In addition to boasting the league's most potent rushing attack, the Dolphins have a solid offensive line, a capable defense, and talented wide receivers in Ted Ginn Jr. and Greg Camarillo .

They also have tight end Anthony Fasano - who should be more than a little familiar with Brady Quinn.

 With Quinn at the helm, Fasano finished his college career with 92 receptions for 1,112 yards and eight touchdowns. He was the second most prolific receiving tight end in the school's history.

A potential trade of Brady Quinn to Miami would bring about the thrilling conclusion to a memorable 2007 Draft Day.

In 2007, the Cleveland Browns passed on Quinn with the 3rd overall pick of NFL Draft. Brady Quinn was rumored to fall no further than No. 9 - where the Miami Dolphins were projected to draft the Notre Dame standout. In a surprise move, the Dolphins passed on Quinn in favor of Cleveland native, Ted Ginn Jr.

The Browns would eventually strike a deal with Bill Parcells and the Dallas Cowboys - acquiring the 22nd overall draft pick and the rights to draft Brady Quinn.

One more trade with Parcells would be the best case scenario for all parties involved.

If that happened, it really would be a match made in heaven.

Posted on: September 27, 2009 5:54 pm
Edited on: September 27, 2009 6:21 pm

Week 3: Trouble in Paradise?

Throughout the offseason, Eric Mangini could not decide on a quarterback.
Three weeks into the regular season, nothing has changed.

Joe Flacco proved unflappable, the Ravens' defense dominated, and Baltimore embarrassed the Browns: 34-3.

Defensively, the Browns were dominated physically from the word go.

Baltimore's offensive line had no problem picking up Rob Ryan's blitzes. Willis McGahee and Ray Rice found running room early and often, and that allowed Joe Flacco to carve up a Browns secondary which spent most of the day on their heels. Cornerbacks Brandon McDonald and Eric Wright played well for the most part, but Flacco was afforded too much time against the Browns' zone coverages.

Offensively, anything that could have gone wrong - went wrong.

Brady Quinn started the game by doing exactly what we've seen him do for the past two weeks. Heading into today's game, Baltimore knew Quinn would play conservatively. Dominique Foxworth would eventually take advantage of this - intercepting Quinn's checkdown pass to Edwards. Under Quinn, the offense struggled to move the football and they finished the half without scoring any points.

Eric Mangini had seen enough and pulled his starting quarterback in favor of Derek Anderson.

He didn't fare much better.

Coming off the bench cold and trailing the Ravens by 20, Derek Anderson struggled. Anderson looked inaccurate and uncomfortable to begin the second half. He forced a few ill-advised passes into coverage - three of which resulted in interceptions.

Regardless of who lined up behind center, the Cleveland Browns seemed overwhelmed on the road against a dominant Ravens' offense.

Eric Mangini must find a way to rally this team together, because this has a look of an organization in disarray.

Ten From the Gentledawg

10. Dave Zastudil had a great game.

If there is anything we can take from this game, it is the continued outstanding play of the Cleveland Browns special teams. Cleveland's offensive futility meant a busy day for punter Dave Zastudil, and he answered the call. Zastudil and the Browns kick coverage unit averaged 51.0 yards per punt - an outstanding average considering the Browns punted 5 times today. Cleveland will have to rely on field position all season, and thankfully they have one of the most consistent punters in the game.

9. Eric Mangini is in danger of losing this team.

Earlier today, an ESPN report surfaced that several Browns players have filed grievances against Mangini for steep fines he's levied for non-football offenses. At least two of these grievances stem from an incident which occurred when Mangini fined a player $1,701 for allegedly stealing a water bottle. With the Browns' poor performance on the field and Mangini's heavy-handed coaching style, I wouldn't be surprised if that grumbling in the locker room becomes a little bit louder. Without results the show for it, Mangini's hard-nosed, authoritative personality simply does not work.

8. The Browns have major issues on defense.

Through the first two weeks of the regular season, I gave the Browns the benefit of the doubt in assessing them as a defense. After witnessing Joe Flacco and the Ravens have their way with the team, it is clear the Browns have major issues on that side of the ball. The most surprising part of this afternoon's loss was the play of the interior linebackers. Eric Barton struggled in coverage and D'Qwell Jackson did not have a good game. Baltimore spread the Browns out with three wide receiver sets, and Cleveland was unable to stop them.

7. Under Derek Anderson, the Browns showed signs of life.

Say what you will about the interceptions, but Derek Anderson was able to move the football down the field. At one point, Anderson took the Browns from the Cleveland 22 all the way to the Baltimore 6. Derek Anderson worked all three wide receivers into the game, and forced the aggressive Ravens to defend the entire field. He wasn't perfect, but Anderson took shots down the field and sustained a long drive which resulted in the lone Browns points of the day.

6. Jerome Harrison is an upgrade over Jamal Lewis.

Heading into the game, I thought the Jamal Lewis injury was a blessing in disguise for the Browns. Harrison has the quickness and vision you'd like to see from a feature back, and he was able to compensate for the lack of a consistent passing game. Harrison never saw playing time due to his inconsistency in pass protection, but there were no signs of that today. Although the score took the Browns out of running situations, offensive coordinator Brian Daboll should be pleased in what he's seen today from Harrison.

5. The Baltimore Ravens are one of the most complete teams in the NFL.

The Browns were not competitive today, and the Ravens were a big part of that. The gap in talent between these two teams was too much, and that showed up in the final score. Baltimore will be one of the most difficult places to play in the NFL this year.  The Browns performed poorly today, and it should stand for something that they played one of the best teams in the NFL on the road. The Ravens are a division opponent, so they'll eventually need to find a way to beat this team.

4. Billy Cundiff filled in admirably for Phil Dawson.

While he did not attempt any difficult field goals, Cundiff did exactly what you'd expect of a backup kicker. The 29-year-old Cundiff drilled the second-half kickoff deep into the end zone not once, but twice - demonstrating the strong leg you'd like to see from a kicker. Dawson should be ready to go next week, but it's certainly good to know the Browns have a seemingly capable kicker to handle the duties should something happen to Phil Dawson.

3. The Browns were beaten physically and mentally.

You could see it in their body language. The Browns had the look of a defeated football team, and some players may have already given up on the year. Shaun Rogers drew a personal foul after mixing it up with a Baltimore offensive guard. His reaction to the penalty was one of indifference than disgust. There were lots of hands on hips today. There was no passion. I have never seen a more worn out football team than this one at the end of a game.

2. The winless Browns might be the worst team in the NFL.

The Detroit Lions pulled off a remarkable victory against a talented Washington team at home. The Raiders have pushed the Chargers to the limit, and the Rams can actually score points on offense. Who is worse than the Browns? The defense has struggled, the offense is inept, and the leaders on this team are far too inconsistent for sustained success. The Cleveland Browns may be the worst team in the NFL.

1. One of these quarterbacks needs to go...and fast.

Benching Brady Quinn halfway through the game forces Eric Mangini to make an important decision. With all of the turmoil surrounding the team, a quarterback controversy will not help unify the lockerroom and maintain offensive continuity. The reality of the situation is this - both Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn are imperfect quarterbacks. Mangini must decide which passer he prefers, and then trade or release the other. Both quarterbacks seem to be playing scared in fear of their jobs. The only way to correct that is to demonstrate confidence in whichever passer he selects.

Posted on: September 20, 2009 10:20 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2009 10:47 pm

Week 2: Brown and Out

It wasn't quite 1987, but boy did this one sting. The names on the backs of the jerseys have changed. The head coaches and owners have changed. The venue, records, and fanbases for both teams have changed dramatically over the years.

Even with all of these differences, time has shown that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

The Cleveland Browns lost once again to their bitter rivals out west, as the Denver Broncos trounced them, 27-6.

On the day Shannon Sharpe was inducted to the Denver Broncos' Ring of Honor, you had to wonder - how many active Cleveland Browns have a shot at achieving such a distinguished accomplishment? I could make a strong argument for Joe Thomas and D'Qwell Jackson, but that's about it.

Looking back on this game, I saw some things that I liked and others that made me cringe. Defensively, the Browns played well when they stayed fresh. Orton and the rest of the Broncos' offense were held in check for the majority of the first half. Kamerion Wimbley, Kenyon Coleman, and Eric Barton lead the charge against the run, and the cornerback tandem of Eric Wright and Brandon McDonald stiffled Denvers' highly skilled tandem of wide receivers.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Browns simply were not good enough to compete. Once again, the combination of Brady Quinn and Brian Daboll struggled to sustain drives and manufacture touchdowns. Quinn and the offense finished the day converting 3 of 14 attempts on 3rd down.

That is unacceptable.

It doesn't get any easier from here, as the Browns square off against the vaunted Ravens' defense next Sunday in Baltimore. It might take a miracle to avoid falling to 0-3 next week, but this is the NFL, and anything can happen.

Ten from the Gentledawg

10. Teams are beginning to respect Eric Wright.

We saw the beginnings of this last week, and this week the trend continues. Brandon Marshall and Eddie Royal were held to a combined 6 receptions for 54 yards, and Eric Wright played a large role in accounting for such limited production. Wright was faced with a tough assignment, and I thought he handled himself well. Kyle Orton and the Broncos threw at Hank Poteat and Brandon McDonald for the majority of the second half. That's not a knock on those guys. It's a testiment to Eric Wright.

9. This is an Eric Mangini defense.

Dating back to his days in New York, Eric Mangini-coached defenses have always been extreme. Mangini is notorious for either sending the house on blitzes or dropping nearly everyone into coverage. Today featured more of the same, but on a much smaller scale. There were several occasions where Rob Ryan and Eric Mangini dropped nine defenders into zone coverage. Nine defenders! To their credit this worked on occasion, but good quarterbacks usually find a way to convert when afforded with that much time.

8. This game could have been ugly.

If you take away Phil Dawson's 47-yard field goal and add in Denvers' two short misses, the final score is 3-33. The Cleveland Browns should consider themselves fortunate that this game ended the way it did, because this easily could have been a blowout. Josh Mcdaniels settled for field goals in situations where his offense could have easily scored touchdowns. When you have an offense incapable of stretching the field, these things will happen.

7. Alex Mack is a rookie center.

For all the talk of Mack's intelligence and strength, he proved that there is a learning curve for even the most talented of rookies. Like the spear which grazed Xerxes in the movie 300 , we found out the seemingly immaculate Mack is still mortal. There is plenty of time for Alex Mack to develop into the dominant center so many expect him to be, but it is evident that change will not occurr overnight.

6. The Browns running game is a product of their offensive line.

Cleveland's rushing attack is directly related to the offensive lineman and the job they do up front. Any success Jamal Lewis or Jerome Harrison enjoyed this year came through holes even the slowest of backs could run through. Lawrence Vickers and Robert Royal have done an excellent job in the running game, and that doesn't show up on the stat board. Jamal Lewis gave me no reason to believe he still has 'it,' and Harrison wasn't much better.

5. Josh Cribbs is still a work in progress.

There is no denying Josh Cribbs is one of the best return specialists in the league. There's also no denying Cribbs has a long way to go in his development as a wide receiver. For the Cleveland Browns to have any sort of success in the passing game, Josh must continue to take strides in his maturation into the offense. Cribbs' route running today left a lot to be desired. He fumbled while trying to create after the catch and struggled to cleanly release on the line of scrimmage. He is clearly still finding his way around this offense.

4. Hank Poteat is not a very good player.

Heading into the regular season, I declared the play of our nickle cornerback will go a long way in determining the strength of our defense. If today was any indication, the Browns have much to be concerned with for the next 14 games. Poteat showed flashes of good play, but was largely ineffective against Denvers'  3-wide sets. Poteat was consistently beaten by Brandon Stokley in man coverage all throughout the game. Unless this issue is addressed, teams will continue to spead the Browns out and pick them apart.

3. Rob Ryan knows how to create pressure.

In his introductory press conference, Rob Ryan described his defense as "an attacking unit." Despite the lack of quarterback sacks, Ryan's unit harrassed Kyle Orton all day. Ryan used stunts and overloards to create confusion among Denvers' offensive linemen, and that was one of the reasons the Browns were able to hang in there early. Ryan's scheme featured a heavy dose of cover 1 and cover 0 - where safeties doubled as linebackers and corners played man on the outside.

2. Eric Barton is one of the smartest players on this team.

One of the most plesant surprises this season has been the play of Eric Barton. Barton played a well-rounded game today. He was able to effectively stop the run, rush the passer, and drop into coverage. Barton seemed to set the tone for the defense, and it became clear why Mangini wanted him to help lead this defense.

1. Brady Quinn has officially been solved.

I alluded to this last week, and it became obvious today: there is a blueprint for stopping Brady Quinn. Teams have figured out that Quinn is reluctant to go down the field in the passing game. Denver has accounted for this by creeping the safeties into the box and daring Quinn to throw the ball down field. It's no coincidence Robert Royal finished the game with one reception for 13 yards. The Broncos pressured Brady Quinn and dared him to take shots down field. In a copycat league, other teams will do the same and likely experience a similar degree of success.

Posted on: September 13, 2009 6:58 pm
Edited on: September 13, 2009 7:16 pm

Week 1: New Versus Old

After months of training camp, preseason games, and quarterback controversy, the 2009 regular season is finally here. For the Cleveland Browns, that means the start of what figures to be another roller coaster season.

Like any roller coaster, this one begins at the bottom.

The very bottom.

Miscommunication, penalties, and one inexperienced quarterback contributed to a 20-34 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

Today’s football game featured a distinct balance between new and old.

New Browns head coach Eric Mangini began his second stint as head coach by facing an old foe – Brett Favre.  Entering his 19th season in the NFL, the ageless Favre made his unprecedented 270th consecutive start behind center – an NFL record. Favre silenced his critics and played within himself for the majority of the game. Although he wasn’t perfect, Favre played well enough to escape Cleveland with a win.

Opposing Favre was newly appointed Browns starting quarterback, Brady Quinn. Heading into his 3rd season in the league, Quinn made his 5th career start…and it showed. Quinn finished the day completing 21 of 35 passes for 205 yards. He threw for a touchdown, but turned the ball over twice. As strange as it may sound, the statistics were actually the highlight of his performance.

Quinn’s conservative approach to the game seemed to match that taken by offensive coordinator, Brian Daboll. When afforded time in the pocket, Quinn rarely took any shots down field. He opted for short completions to running backs and tight ends instead of utilizing the team’s biggest weapons in Josh Cribbs and Braylon Edwards. The two receivers finished with a combined 3 receptions for 22 yards.

Contrasting the quarterbacks were two running backs at different ends of their careers.

Starting at running back for the Minnesota Vikings was the explosive Adrian Peterson. At 24, Adrian Peterson has already cemented himself as one of, if not the premier running back of the day. Peterson certainly looked the part as he carried the ball 25 times for a whopping 180 yards. Most of that running came behind the best run-blocking offensive line in football.

The most recent running back to lead the league in rushing faced off against one of the old ones. Just weeks removed from his 30th birthday, Jamal Lewis was unable to match the effort of his successor. Lewis and the Browns were able to find running room early, but it was too little too late. The game's score took the Browns out of running situations, and that proved to be the difference in the game.

The Cleveland Browns’ 2009 season began with a disappointing loss. There were, however, several things to take away from this game. They say those who do not learn from their mistakes are doomed to repeat them. In that spirit, I present the top 10 things I’ve learned from Vikings/Browns...

10. Brian Daboll will run a conservative, West Coast offense.

Whether it's the 2nd & 16 toss to Jamal Lewis or the 2nd & 15 draw to James Davis, Brian Daboll's offensive playcalling was extremely simple. Although Daboll took advantage of Josh Cribbs in the wildcat, his offense looked flat. Some of that falls on Brady Quinn's decision making, but the majority of the blame rests on Dabolls well-rounded shoulders.

9. Adrian Peterson is very, very good.

Sometimes you have to experience an event first-hand to appreciate just what you're witnessing. There is no question that Adrian Peterson is a special player, but I have gained an in-depth scope as to the depth of his talents. He possesses superior vision, balance, strength, agility, and acceleration to any runner I have ever seen. Peterson is without a doubt the best running back in the league.

8. The Browns will be competitive this season.

Heading into this game, you would be hard-pressed to find a fan or analyst that gave Cleveland a chance. The Browns limited Peterson to an astounding 25 yards on 11 carries through the first half of the football game. Minnesota actually trailed 13-10 at halftime. Had the Browns played first-half football through all four quarters, they would have walked away as winners.

7. Kamerion Wimbley has emerged as a solid outside linebacker.

Wimbley had a strong training camp and performed well throughout the preseason. It was nice to see him continue playing at a high level entering the regular season. Wimbley was a big reason Peterson was ineffective through the first half. He played a very disciplined football game - maintaining his containment while remaining active in pursuit.

6. Rob Ryan loves blitzing defensive backs.

It's a trait we saw in Oakland and something that has continued in Cleveland. Ryan pressured Brett Favre by sending defensive backs to the quarterback early and often. Abram Elam, Brodney Pool, and Brandon McDonald, were all very active around the line of scrimmage. Both safties recorded sacks today in what figures to the the first of many.

5. The Cleveland Browns have the best special teams unit in the league.

That statement is no exaggeration - the Browns possess one of the most balanced and explosive special teams units in the NFL. Dave Zastudil and the punting until were able to keep the Vikings deep for the majority of the game. Phil Dawson consistently sent kicks deep into the endzone. Josh Cribbs was explosive. That, plus outstanding kick coverage makes Cleveland one of the most dangerous teams in that element of the game.

4. Joe Thomas is an outstanding left tackle.

Jared Allen was embarrassed today. Joe Thomas neutralized the Pro Bowl defensive end in pass rush situations and manhandled him against the run. Allen finished the day with 0.5 tackles and no quarterback sacks. In his 3rd season in the league, Joe Thomas has already cemented his name among the elite tackles in the game.

3. The Browns need to work on penalties and discipline.

Cleveland finished the day with 8 penalties for 66 yards. Some of the penalties were the result of mental mistakes, but others were issues with technique. Knowing Eric Mangini, this team should have those cleaned up by next week, but it was shocking to see, to say the least.

2. Shaun Rogers is healthy...and back to form.

Any time you have a nose tackle who consistently commands double and triple teams, you have the start of a great defense. Rogers was extremely disruptive all game. He played a large role in stopping Peterson early, and he helped generate pressure on obvious passing situations. Rogers should find his way back to Hawaii at the end of the season.

1. Brady Quinn is an average quarterback.

You can't have success in the NFL without balance, and Brady Quinn is not a balanced passer. Quinn has consistently struggled with the deep ball - something that hurt him when driving during the final minutes of play. Quinn chose to attempt only high percentage passes. This strategy worked early, but it backfired late in the game. When the Browns were faced with obvious passing situations, Quinn could not deliver. For Quinn and the Browns to be successful, he'll need to get the wide receivers involved and stretch the field.

Posted on: November 30, 2008 7:31 pm

Part 1: Fixing the Cleveland Browns' Offense

Out of sheer frustration, I've decided to break down the Cleveland Browns in a two part series. The first part will take a look at the Browns' offense and what they need to focus on heading into 2009.

On offense, the problem starts with personnel. The Browns would be an infinitely better team if they only took advantage of their players' strengths. I've said it before and I maintain my original position - there is tons of talent and potential hidden throughout this team. What's been killing the Browns this season is failing to maximize that talent and turn it into production.

Rob Chudzinski and the Browns' coaching staff are stubborn. Chudzinski's greatest weakness as a coordinator is his inability to adapt. Like trying fitting a square peg into a round hole, Chud continuously takes the offensive personnel on this team and applies them to his system - regardless if they properly fit. There are two great examples in Jamal Lewis and Kellen Winslow. Jamal's running style and and lack of ellusiveness make him best suited for two-back sets. Jamal cannot create on his own - so a fullback is absolutely necessary for him to have any success in this system. Seeing the Browns have one of the best run-blocking fullbacks in the NFL, it's common sense to use the two together - but no. Lewis constantly runs out of singleback sets and stretch plays.

Kellen Winslow is a receiver blessed with the size and strength to play tight end. Winslow has the speed to go with arguably the best set of hand in the NFL. Such a dynamic game-changing player should be the focal point of the Browns' offense. Winslow needs between 10-15 targets per game to best utilize the talent he brings to the roster. Kellen Winslow is a Terrell Owens or Larry Fitzgerald type who can constantly win regardless of coverage. For Kellen average 4.3 receptions per game to this point is a joke.

What the Browns need to do offensively is establish an identity, and that starts with the running game.

Based on the personnel available on this roster, the Cleveland Browns are best suited running an aerial-based possession style of offense. Since the Browns have finally committed to Brady Quinn as the future quarterback, it is essential to build the offense around his strengths and weaknessess. Quinn has shown the ability to make good decisions and accurate throws in the short to mid-range passing game. It is critical for Phil Savage, the head coach, and Rob Chudzinski to build the offense around Brady Quinn. This means, the running backs, fullbacks, tight ends, and wide receivers all need the necessary skillsets to support that offensive philosphy.

In a west-coast type passing attack, running backs H-backs, and fullbacks must be able to catch the ball out of the backfield and possess the ability to create yards after the catch. Such a system obviously favors a feature back like Jerome Harrison, who has continuously proven he posesses big play ability and the speed necessary to thrive in such a scheme.

Since Harrison is a relatively smaller back (5'9, 205lbs), the Browns would need a short yardage back to compliment Harrison's speed and agility. Enter Lawrence Vickers. I've said it before, but Vickers is a sensational talent. He has the hands to become part of the passing attack, the size (6'0, 250lbs) to gain the tough yards, and the vision to remain an excellent lead blocker. The Browns would be best served to use Lawrence Vickers in conjunction with Jerome Harrison to form a running back tandem. Together, the two runners give the Browns unlimited options for creativity in the running game alone. The split back formation, the strong-I formation, and the weak-I formations would become base sets for the Browns. The conversion of the offense would be a tremendous aide in pass protection - an area the Browns have struggled with from the running back position.

Staying with the offense, the wide receiver play is paramount to a successful offense - regardless of the change in philosophy. Speed and consistency are a huge part of the short-range passing game, so players like Braylon Edwards and Syndric Steptoe should be counted on to get open and use their ability to create after the catch.

Offense Review
  • Kellen Winslow 10-15 targets per game
  • Build around Brady Quinn's strengths
  • Harrison/Vickers running back tandem
  • Continuous solid wide receiver play

Thank you to everyone for reading. Keep an eye out for the second of this two part series entitled, "Fixing the Cleveland Browns' Defense."
Posted on: November 26, 2008 6:40 am
Edited on: November 26, 2008 7:05 am

A Golden Boy No More: Quinn Out For Season

The Plain Dealer among other news sources is reporting Brady Quinn is done for the rest of the year.

And I for some reason, I can not stop smiling.

Only in Cleveland. Add Brady Quinn's name to a list of top-tier talent which includes Courtney Brown, Kellen Winslow, LeCharles Bentley, and Joe Jurevicius. What do those players all have in common? They are prominent Browns who have showed promise and given fans something to cheer about. They've inspired hope within a city desperate for a winner. They made us believe - even for one second - that good things might just come to a city that has waited over 40 years for an NFL championship.

The comedy of the situation does not stop there.

Back in April when General Manager Phil Savage refused to trade Derek Anderson, people openly questioned whether such a decision was right for the immediate success of the Browns. Savage held firm in his decision, stressing the importance of having two able-bodied quarterbacks on the roster. He mentioned how unpredictable the league is, and how depth is critical at such an important position.

Just where do they sell those crystal balls?

Quinn's departure opens the door for Derek Anderson - a door which should not have been closed in the first place. If Derek happens to be reading this, I have two words for you my friend:

Carpe Diem!

These next 5 games will ultimately determine the path Anderson's career will take with the Browns or otherwise. Derek Anderson has demonstrated the ability to be a franchise quarterback. He's played up and down all season - leading to a loss of his job.

Now is the time for DA to make good on all 24 million of those promises to the Cleveland Browns. Many players in the NFL are not afforded a second opportunity to prove their worth. Let's wait and see exactly how Derek answers the call this time around.

It has been said before, but quarterback controversies have a way of working themselves out. Derek Anderson has one last shot to prove himself a capable starting quarterback. If Anderson can utilize the experience he's accumulated over the past few years and turn it into success, things will become very interesting in Browns Town.

And just maybe you'll be smiling too.

Posted on: November 7, 2008 12:28 am
Edited on: November 7, 2008 1:41 am

Week 10: The Drive...Part II

Why does this have to happen to us? Why?

Seriously. Somebody please tell me why Cleveland is so cursed?

I feel sick. I feel frustrated. I feel upset. There are so many jumbled up emotions running through me as a die-hard Browns fan that I don't know where to start. Let's see if we can sort this whole thing out while I take a minute to calm my nerves...

The Good
  • Brady Quinn: Brady Quinn was as good as advertised. If there is one thing to take away from this crushing defeat, it is the play of our young quarterback. Quinn showed accuracy and great decision making tonight. He showed fantastic poise in the pocket and played within himself to his strengths. Considering Quinn will only get better of time, you have to be pleased with what you saw out of him. While doing some pre-game research, I stumbled upon this quote from Charlie Weis, "Quinn's pinpoint accuracy will make up for any questions of arm strength." In one regard, Charlie was dead on. Quinn was able to sustain drives by using his sure-handed tight ends across the middle of the field.
  • Jerome Harrison: For weeks Browns fans have been scratching their heads as to why Harrison is utilized more in the offensive gameplan. Today we saw why. Harrison finished the game with 5 carries for 48 yards. Yes, that's not a typo: Fourty-eight yards on five carries. Wow. I feel confident the Browns will be able to function effectively in the case of injury to Jamal Lewis. Maybe even better than normal...
  • Josh Cribbs: M3talhead mentioned Josh Cribbs is the most valuable asset on this roster, and it's hard to argue with him. Cribbs did an admirable job in the return game, performed well in kick coverage, and provided huge gains on the ground offensively. Whenever the Browns needed a big play, Josh Cribbs was there. Without a doubt Captain Cribbs is this team's first half MVP.
The Bad
  • The Secondary/Pass Defense: I should have seen this coming a mile away. The Browns defensive backs have looked good at times, but they never were able to put together a complete effort. Antwaan Randle-El tourched us. T.O. tourched us. Santonio Holmes torched us. Matt Jones torched us. At this point in the season, our burnt up secondary is darker than Shaun Rogers at a family reunion.
  • Braylon Edwards: This one is relative. Braylon was poised to have a big game against a banged-up Denver pass defense. He committed a false start penality - something inexcusable for a wide receiver in the NFL. In the season-deciding game, Braylon converted 7 looks into 1 catch for 15 yards. Pathetic.
The Ugly
  • The Drive...Part II: The Cleveland Browns scored a touchdown to go up 27 to 30 with 4:57 left to play. Before Dawson kicked it off, I sent this text message to my good friend Chris:
"OMG the drive is going to repeat itself...Turn off the TV!"

How painful was that to watch? I mean, I can't even imagine how those poor souls at the stadium must have felt watching John Elway Jay Cutler systematically march down the field knowing the inevitable was going to happen. I'm going to conduct a poll, because I'd be willing to bet 80% of Browns fans knew exactly what was coming.

That's not right. It's not right at all.

During my week 10 preview, I asked Brady Quinn for a little bit of magic:

Brady Quinn,

Do your best and help this team win the game. Do it...

...for the seasoned fans, who vividly remember the heartbreak of years past.

...for the young fans, who only see the Browns for failure and misery.

...for the doubters, who believe there is no hope for the future.

...for the cynics, who have no reason left to believe.

...for your family, who has raised you to become the man you are today.

...for the your team, who needs to win in order to stay alive.

But most importantly Brady, do it for the city of Cleveland. We will show up on Thursday in droves to support you and the team, so make this Thursday night game a memory we will not forget.

Well...at least he got part of it right: This is a game memory that I will never forget.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com